Road Safety News
 

Recession blamed for rise in Derbyshire road deaths

Friday 12th March 2010

The number of cyclists and motorcyclists killed or seriously injured on Derbyshire's roads has soared in the past 12 months, possibly due to the economic crisis.

I n 2009, 170 motorcyclists were seriously or fatally injured – a third up on the 128 in 2008. And the number of cyclists badly hurt has risen to 57, up 19% from the previous 12 months when the figure was 48.

The rises have led to a 5% overall increase in the total number of fatalities and serious injuries on the region's roads.

Rob Hill, from the Derby and Derbyshire Road Safety Partnership, said the recession might be to blame as drivers and riders look to save cash.

He said: "There has been a steady increase in the number of people buying motorcycles. Some of the increase in usage is because of the economic downturn, because it's cheaper to run motorcycles than cars. People may also be cycling more because it is a cheaper mode of transport."

Click here to read the full ‘This is Derbyshire’ news report.

 

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I own a 1100cc touring motorcycle and a 900cc motorcycle biased toward sports touring. Each one costs me considerably less to insure than my 1500cc family diesel car. Both bikes are comprehensively insured with protected no-claims bonus as is my car. In fact each bike costs me about half what it costs to insure my car. I have passed the IAM advanced motorcycle test and passed the RoSPA advanced motorcycle test at gold level and have been repeatidly resested every three years and passed at gold level each time. The bike insurance company takes into account the fact that I have passed advanced motorcycle tests when calculating my premium. The point is to take post-test rider skills development and take and pass an advanced test/assessment. Then spend a while getting quotes and choose a company that offers the appropriate policy for the individual riders needs and offers the appropriate discount for having an advanced riding award. A little "legwork" can save alot of money.

My car driven sensibly within legal speed limits returns between 50-55mpg. The 1100cc motorcycle ridden the same way returns 50-55mpg. The bike tyres don't wear out after 3000 miles! You can have a lot of fun and save alot of money using the techniques recommended in post-test rider skills development programmes.

A little knowledge of how physics applies to motorcycle handling together with the influence of road surface types and wear characteristics, can really explode a few urban myths. There's alot of great things to learn out there!

The 1100cc bike has a 6000 mile manufacturer specified interval. My previous diesel car had a manufacturer specified service interval of 6000 miles. Both the bike and the car were serviced by their respective manufacturer franchised dealers (the bike still is). Over a ten year period there wasn't a great deal of difference in the costs. I have to say that the bike tyres do cost me a bit more than those for the car.
Mark - Wiltshire

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Unless you have a moped/scooter, a larger motorcycle will actually cost more to run than a car, they need servicing more often, tyres will need replacing more often and are more expensive and insurance will often be more than a car, many cars will do more mpg aswell.As a driver and rider I dont need any lessons on how to ride down a hill either - after several advanced riding sessions, the instructors didn't mention this either.
Mark K, Leicester

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I cannot disagree with the comments of Mark. I have argued for some time that more needs to be done after CBT and also after passing the test, to instruct riders and improve their abilities through further ongoing training and some of the other initiatives that are available through various athorities.

It amazes me how niave and self glorifying some bikers are, they spend thousands on bike, accessories, clothing, helmet etc and believe themselves a 'brilliant rider' but wont spend as little as say £150 to vastly improve their abilities. Some would rather spend more on a single track day experience which could feed their ego and lead them to believe that they are a better rider than indeed they are.

Derbyshire certainly has become the DEATH county for bikers with over 250 DSI from 2003 to 2008 in just about 84 miles of road. with some 69% of accidents on right handers [ which is unusual to say the least]

I recently communicated with the RIDE magazine and expressed my concerns re the dangers of riding up and down hills which is something no one teaches [ Not IAM RoSPA, Police etc.] and is taken for granted perhaps, which in my opinion is a mistake, There are major differences in the techniques and mental attitude required to maintain safety on a motorcycle, between riding up a hill and riding down one. I have further tried to influence motorcyclists on some websites with regard to the heat required in a tyre in order to alleviate the possibility of losing it particularly on bends, when the tyres are colder after a break for lunch or whatever.

I believe that an understanding of these matters is important in order that motorcyclists be made more aware of possible dangers asociated with the bike and not just how to ride a road .....faster.!!!!!!!
Bob Craven, Blackpool

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Tragic news for motorcyclists and cyclists alike. I ride a large motorcycle, cycle and drive a car, and have seen at first hand the horrific results of a collision involving a motorcyclist. Sadly some motorcyclists and cyclists (vulnerable road users) along with other road user groups, exhibit a stunning naivety in the way that they rely on somebody else to to the right thing - instead of keeping control in their hands.

One very effective solution is post-test skills development. Very few motorcyclists avail themselves of the first rate opportunities that are available. Many riders have an inflated view of their own skills, others think about getting help to develop their abilities, but never get around to it.

The motorcycling media continues to whinge about bikers being unfairly targeted by police services and leglislators. They say that more rider education and training is the answer, yet that same media gives relatively little coverage to the benefits of post-test skills development. There are some superb publications out there with ABC circulation figures of between approx. 30,000 and 170,000. There is a fantastic opportunity here to promote post-test rider skills development with quality in-depth journalism.

The RiDE (Riders Intervention Developing Experience)course operated in some police servive areas is a superb iniative targeting riders who offend and offering them a real constructive alternative to prosecution. This needs to be vastly expanded.
Mark - Wiltshire

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